Category Archives: Deelish

Catching up

Even though blogging has been tossed on the back burner for awhile, I have actually been doing blog worthy activities (other than sitting on the couch “researching” the internet).

So let’s play a little catch up!

As promised earlier this year, I’m doing my darndest to keep my 2012 resolution to try one new recipe a month.

Reach for the sky!

(Please disregard numbers 1, 2 & 4 for now…I’m a work in progress)

Let’s back up a scootch and pretend like I am a domestic goddess chef extraordinaire… and that it’s February.

The month of love brought a couple of recipe challenges including one that I didn’t even force Muffin and I to eat…in fact, I made it as a “gift”.  Enter The Pioneer Woman’sThe Best Lasagna. Ever.

Best. Lasagna. Ever. (this is not mine, obs)

Source

My plan was to make two small-ish dishes – one for us and one for our dear friends who just birthed a brand new bebe (“Congrats on your new bundle!  How about some salmonella to go along with that unrelenting fatigue and incessant crying?!  You’re welcome!”)  Turns out that I’m bad at cooking AND math.  I just didn’t have enough of “spreading out ingredients to make two lasagnas” for us too.  However I’m totally confident that it turned out exactly like Pioneer Woman’s 612 “OMG this is so goooood!” comments lasagna.  What?  Just let me have that.

So although it was a new recipe, I felt like I needed to tackle something that we would actually consume ourselves in order to meet my 2012 resolution.  Enter new recipes #2 and #3 (in one month!!).

I saw all of these deeeelish looking grilled sandwiches on Closet Cooking (another Canadian blogger…wha, whaat!)  and could barely decide which one to devour create.  After much drooling and panting, I eventually landed on Bacon Guacamole Grilled Cheese Sandwiches served up with Creamy Mushroom and Roasted Cauliflower Soup.  Both dishes = TO. DIE. FOR.  The soup was fantastic (even with half milk, half light cream, sans wine) and surprisingly easy, and the sandwiches…well, unless you’ve had your taste buds burned off in some sort of tragic hot pizza eating incident – this will change grilled cheese for you – FOREVER.

Clearly not my actual dish again...mine looked JUST like this though. Ahem.

Soup, soup - so good for the soul. Stealing photos - also good.

Source for both images.

And just quickly, because we all know that I’m no foodie blogger and I’m running out of synonyms for “yummy”, March’s recipe was super successful and awesome as well.  Because I’m that good.  I stumbled across this little number on Pinterest (of course) – Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken and whipped up my own rendition of fried rice to go along with it.  Muffin and I eat A LOT of chicken breast and it was so nice to change it up a bit.  Super tasty and a definite keeper.  That said, I totally under estimated how long it would take to cube, dip, roll, brown, give little massages to, sing lullabies for and french braid the chicken’s hair.  Plan for some extra prep time to baby that whiny, self-absorbed little chicken so that in the end it is totally your sticky, sweet bitch.  Yum!

Seeing a pattern...not my actual dish.

Source

Alright, enough with the food.  (Is anyone else gnawing on the couch arm right now?  No?  Just me?)

Running is ramping back up for me (and likely everyone else in North America too).  The weather is a little warmer, the days are much brighter, and so running is seeming a bit easier.  Big selling point for me.

Last month’s virtual race went swimmingly, so swimmingly in fact, that I’ve signed up to do another virtual race!  They are just so darn cheap fun!  (Did I mention that I won a prize last time too?  Not surprising for people that know me and know that I win stuff.  Sorry losers, that random prize has my name all over it.)  So at some point this week (Friday, I’m looking at you) I’ve got the 10k Jelly Bean virtual race!  Again, you can do the race where ever your little legs will take you and there are four events to choose from (5k, 10k, half-marathon run or half-marathon bike).  Or you can do any combination of all four…if you are a giant keener nerd.  As for me (and probably most of the other cool kids), 10k it is.  Tomorrow is the last day to sign up and you have to complete your event by April 8 – just in time for Cadbury egg snorting!  That seems like sound logic to me folks…one little race + mucho Easter candy consumption = balance.  Sign up here…now.

And finally for our little catch up (wasn’t this fun? Just like old friends getting together over coffee, except that one annoying friend dominated the whole conversation) …one more awesome thing I did while I wasn’t here – deep water running.  Read all about it here.  (Spoiler alert, I didn’t drown but somehow still managed to look like a beached whale in a one piece.)

Pinterest is the new running

A dark morning.  A lazy girl.  An enticing laptop.  Annoying running shoes.  An obvious decision.

This has pretty much been my weekends in a nutshell lately.  Why run when you can drool over other people’s walk-in closets and Chanel necklaces on Pinterest?  If that’s wrong, I don’t want to be right.  BUT! it hasn’t all been a big, fast waste of time…just 90% of it.  The oh-so helpful Pinterest machine managed to kick start one of my “big” 2012 goals…one new recipe a month!  January = check!

Pinterest version…pork and butternut squash stew from EverydayPaleo.

Looks pretty tasty, no?

And the “how to”….

The d-low

As some of you may know (*cough* Muffin *cough*) I’m no cook, which is why I’ve committed to trying one new recipe a month.

But I realized something this time.  I think I mostly hate prepping to cook.  Notice the ingredients above?  Shallots, coconut milk, garam masala?!?  What the crap…who owns this stuff.  I had to go to three grocery stores (Sobey’s = leeks; Farmboy = pork; Metro = coconut milk), Bulk Barn (garam masala…and miscellaneous treats because c’mon who goes to Bulk Barn and doesn’t get candy?) so that I didn’t have to buy a whole jar for 2 teaspoons of something that I’m not entirely sure what it is, and my mom-in-laws for shallots (because she actually does cook and own this stuff).  Seriously?  This is why I hate cooking.  If someone would do all of the recon and shopping, I’d be more than happy to throw things in a crock pot.  More.than.happy.

Regardless, I persevered and slaved over a warm-ish slow cooker to produce this…ta-da!!

Ew, stew

Joy of Cooking here I come!

I’m thinking next time I’ll hire a chef and food stylist before snapping a pic.  So, on to February…anyone have any “three ingredients or less”, preferably microwaveable, recipes they’d like to share?

Speaking of the wonderful world of Pinterest (what, we were still talking about it, right?  First sign of an addiction right there…everything comes back to the vice) I’ve stole a couple of other super (easy) ideas from it too.

Introducing “Awesome shit I stole from Pinterest”!

1) My festive contribution to the work Christmas potluck.  Pinterest details here.

My version of the delicious hats

2) Working it at home…I did the circuit three times and was happily huffing and puffing.  Best part…no equipment required.  (However a yoga mat is nice if you’re working on hardwood or are a big baby or both, like me.)  Pinterest link.

Indoor sweat-fest

3) Delish homemade dressing. (Pinterest deets)  I did modify the recipe a bit (remember my lack of on-hand ingredients?  It spans across all cooking genres) and basically just used plain greek yogurt, balsamic vinegar and dijon mustard – skipping honey and oil, because I couldn’t really taste the difference so decided to skip the extra calories.  And then proceeded to use the whole jar in one sitting.  Balance folks.)

Magic in a jar

4) This has been my mantra for a good 30 years or so.  Although the adding the word “disturbingly” before “messy” might be a bit more accurate.  (Pinning source)

Did not need Pinterest inspiration on this one.

And lastly, my fave project on the to-do list.  Shannaners, you + me + Prosecco = next weekend.  Pinterest success!

Very important on the must do list

Desert (the verb)

Synonyms: abscond, apostatize, bail out, beach, betray, bolt, check out, chuck, cop out, crawl out, decamp, depart, duck, escape, flee, fly, forsake, give up, go, go AWOL, go back on, go over the hill, go west, jilt, leave, leave high and dry, leave in the lurch, leave stranded, light, maroon, opt out, play truant, pull out, quit, relinquish, renounce, resign, run out on, sneak off, split, strand, take a hike, take off, tergiversate, throw over, vacate, violate oath, walk

Yep, they pretty much all describe my behaviour over the past 14 days.  But contrary to popular belief, I haven’t totally abandoned FunnerRunner!  The past couple of weeks have been a bit hectic, gloomy and uninspiring – not great reading material. (<–like this)  And that just won’t do here.  So in the meantime, sit back and enjoy a photo recap from our May 2-4er weekend. And instead of curling up into a little ball with a bottle of Prosseco and a straw, I’ll work on a real update for y’all.

Saturday bright and early…20k prep.

I ate this...on purpose...not for a TV game show challenge.

Breakfast of champions isn't complete without a spoonful of PB

New running fuel...and my new giant H20 bottle.

20k done…barely, but that’s another story.  (Thank goodness this blog is about clocking miles and not about actually being a good runner)  On to the park with Piper!

W-A-L-K-? face

BDFF (Best dog friend forevah)

Off to a backyard shin-diggery-do at Hooles, B-Rock and the new bundle’s pad to eat, drink and be drunk merry.

Little B-Rock

B-Rock x2

Muffin & Kluke rockin' out

Piperoni rockin' out

On the road again…to the Gull River for some paddling and camping with Team Smoyce!  (Note: do not attempt camping, in the rain, in May, without dousing yourself in paint thinner (or whatever else is stronger than DEET) and an extra large bottle of something alcoholic enough to distract you from the incessant black flies and mosquitoes.  Seriously…blood dripping down the back of my ears.)

A dog with a plan

Agent Smith & Muffin "strategizing" their attack

Not drowning! Whoowee!

Checking in with the gals

There you have it…a post on a running blog and with no useful running material.  Maybe I should change the blog name to “Tipsy dog lover”, or more realistically, “I drink too much and take a lot of pictures of my dog”.

My secret trifecta of success

This past weekend, I headed out on my own for a leisurely 20km and you know what…I felt ok!  (That is, I was fairly confident that my lungs were not going to explode and my hip flexors weren’t actually made of concrete.)  I’ve had time to reflect on why this unlikely stroke of endurance was bestowed on me and a few things come to mind. 

1) The sun.  Seriously.  I was bundled up, a la Nanook, and just that bit of sunshine on my face was enough to fool my little brain, and legs, into thinking that -18C was far, far away. 

2) New tunes.  I cued up the old-school hip hop playlist that Muffin had mixed and lost myself in the nostalgia of high school dances, road trips, illegal substance abuse and dry humping.  Kidding, kidding.  Just the dances and road trips…and maybe some hijacked Baby Duck.  I digress…the point is “Check yo’self” is a sweet running tune. 

3) No fear.  I did not budge off the shoulder of the road for anyone.  And lemme tell ya, people are an angry bunch.  They DO NOT want “FreakincrazygetofftheG.D.roadyoustupidarse!!” runners on their turf.  But lemme also tell you this…man, it was nice to run on dry pavement.  And people can’t tell if you are waving or flipping them off when you are wearing mittens.

So yep, 20km down and it felt great, well, manageable.  And all thanks to my new found super-awesome trifecta to super-awesome running power.  Maybe this race at the end of the month is an option afterall.  Oh and by the way, recovery was slightly better this week…

All the way with whey!

A French Vanilla Whey Sensation smoothie was a deeelish treat to recoup some tired muscles.  Normally, I’m not a huge protein shake, bar, etc. gal and that’s mostly because I’m an “eater”.  I like to get a lot of bang for my caloric buck and usually I find products like that a bit dense.  Why eat a measly bar when I can eat ENTIRE cans of tuna??  (Besides the mercury poisoning and questionable amounts of sodium…)

Stay tuned for the “FunnerRunner’s guide to not having to amputate extremities”.  Oh the anticipation…

Recovery-schmecovery

This morning, after teaching my usual Friday morning spin class, I reminded the gals to make sure they got a good breakfast – “WITH PROTEIN!” – to recoup those glam gams.  (Yep, I teach cycling at a gym…may not have mentioned that during my enthralling running stories.)

Yes, this is an entirely accurate portrayal of how I look during a 6am spin class.

So then I started thinking about how well, or really not-so well, I treat my body after working out. 

Let’s take last weekend for example.  I ran 18km (more like a never-ending crawl straight into the arms of death) , “stretched” (put my hands over my head while gasping for air) and then headed home.  Then I’m pretty sure I ate a few handfuls of Party Mix (deelish), had a shower and then made a playlist with Muffin (old school hip-hop…wha, what!) for our super fun cottage party that night.  Throw in some leftovers, a bran-blueberry muffin…and zero water and zero protein.  Skip a few hours ahead to where I celebrated my awesome athletic prowess with my bestie, alcohol.  I may or may not have had a slice of pizza between the living room dance party and the sofa black-out.

Huh.  So what could I have done to recover a bit better?  How can I starting walking the big talking that I’m giving to others?

So in an effort to redeem myself as a somewhat responsible fitness instructor, here are some of my fave protein sources for post-workout recovery!

  • Liberte Greek Yogourt 0%  Plain Non Fat Yogurt

I can’t get enough of this stuff.  Major source of protein…super creamy, no fat, very little sugar.  Toss in some frozen berries and you’ll have a satisified and happy belly.

  • Cottage cheese & tuna – seriously my parents have been eating this concoction since Jane Fonda was the shizzle and we had the exercise album to prove it.  Take equal parts (or to your liking) and mix it on up for a wicked lunch treat.  (But eat it in your office because people are mean.  I’ve learned that the hard way.)  My college roomie (Hi Harv!) starting adding a splash of Italian dressing into the mix, which is pretty tasty too.
  • Peanut butter – if you run, I don’t need to say another word.  Except that I will.  PB is like an overpowering force for most runners.  It calls to them from the back of the highest cupboard, unsuccessfully hidden behind jars of pasta sauce and Metamucil.  I’ve learned this from reading copious amounts of scientific research on the subject.  Or not.  But I bet I’m right.  On another pb/runner addiction note, I was happily eating a spoonful of peanut butter last night (100% peanuts – I’m trying!) and Muffin looked at me and snickered.  Me – “What?!  Lots of people do this.  I’m not weird!”  Muffin – “Serial killers probably think they are normal too”.  Nice, huh?
  • Black beans (with cilantro and lime juice)

    Black beans = justifiable use of a sombrero

It’s good protein, fibre and makes you feel like you can justify a big margarita on the side.  And a sombrero.

Just a couple of faves from me…what do you eat after a work out?  Share the love, peeps.

PS – here’s an overall good site for fueling and recovery:  Performance training foods (Runner’s World)